Sunday, December 27, 2009

Christmas gifts were well accepted

These three little vests took most of a year. I started the black one during hockey season. The two patterns are easy to knit, so they didn't distract from the action. Hockey ended and the vest was put aside. Midsummer, I realized I needed a more active plan.

By mid July, I had the back finished and was up to the armpits on the front. Disaster strikes! I ran out of the Ivory sprinkles I was using for contrast. This was Wool-Ease bought about ten years ago when Woolworth's was going out of business. With the vest back to the ball of yarn stage, I started again with white for contrast. I had lots of that! I finished the front and back and all the bands. That's when I discovered that the sides were different lengths. Grumble, grumble, retreat back to the armpits. So I knit that vest twice!

If the vests look long, they are. The kids all have long torsos and there is growing room. Knit, knit some more and the red vest was finished. Time is getting short and I still have the blue vest to do. Black and red yarn are Wool-Ease sprinkles. The ivory sprinkles went into the blue vest. The solid on that one is blue heather. The little guy put his on backwards, so he's getting help here. I checked with my daughter before starting the project. No sense knitting something that won't be worn. I was happy to see the boys in vests the day of the Sunday School Christmas program.

Family Christmas was celebrated at my son's house on Saturday, brunch and gifts were the plan. Good thing, since I finally finished the blue vest about 9:00pm Christmas day. I was knitting a pair of felted clogs, which needed their run through the washer in time to dry. Past history of clog making said that they dry quickly if placed on top of the boiler. So far I have always done this in cold weather, when the heat was on. We have steam heat in our house. They were dry by Friday afternoon and were wrapped up.

It is pajama day at son's house on the day after Christmas, so all the kids and some of the adults came dressed for bed. One daughter and family went to the grocery store on the way to the party, in their pjs and slippers. All gifts were received happily. It's a mixed blessing for the whole family to like what I knit. Socks were knit for birthdays and I ended up doing 19 pairs. I didn't even knit any for my husband.

We do have a crafty family, with most everyone hand crafting gifts. I addition to knitting, I sewed 6 pairs of flannel pajama pants for grandkids and DH. At least those went quickly. Other hand crafted gifts given were: carving boards made from 3 different woods, Christmas balls decorated with plastic clay and crocheted dish cloths. The family quilter has been moving across the country, so her sewing machine was quiet this holiday.

Finally, I can really relax. I'm trying to turn this pile of yarn into a pair of socks from left over yarn. It's one of the December challenge options for the Ravelry Sock Knitters Anonymous group. I need to cast on in December and finish by Jan. 31.

I'm off work until January, so I have more knitting time. This is a poor picture of my progress. There are eight different sock yarns involved, all left over from other projects. I didn't know whether the sock would be ugly or interesting. Interesting seems to have won. The stitch pattern is a slip stitch pattern from the first Barbara Walker treasury. Once I had the pattern set up, it was easy to follow. I'm weaving ends in as I go, so no clean up later.

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